Vietnam exported 6.32 billion USD worth of commodities in the first half of May, a decrease of 9.5 percent compared over the previous fortnight, the General Department of Customs reported.

Meanwhile, the country's imported goods were worth 8.19 billion USD, an increase of 34.7 percent compared to the second half of April.

This meant the country's trade deficit was 1.87 billion USD for the first two weeks of May. This compares to a trade deficit of 3.7 billion USD from the beginning of the year.

The total export turnover from the beginning of this year to May 15 totalled 56.09 billion USD, while import turnover was 59.78 billion USD.

The import turnover for the first five months was expected to reach 66.2 billion USD, an increase of 15.8 percent compared to the same period last year.

Regarding exports, key export products from the beginning of the year included telephones and components (10.44 billion USD), garments and textiles (7.23 billion USD), computers, electronic products and spare parts (5.35 billion USD), footwear (4.09 billion USD), machines, equipments and accessories (2.78 billion USD) and wood and wooden products (2.32 billion USD).

Meanwhile, Vietnam's main imported products were machines and equipment serving production.

The General Statistics Office attributed the high trade deficit to an increasing demand for infrastructure investment and production. This led to an increase in demand for machines, equipments and materials.

Meanwhile, the economy is dependent on imported materials because a supporting industry has not fully developed in Vietnam.

"FDI enterprises have ultilised opportunities from free-trade agreements which take effect this year", said the office.

Despite unsatisfactory production and business results for the first four months of this year, many enterprises hope that their business will improve in the next six months, said the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

For the last nine months of the year, 42.2 percent of enterprises will expand their businesses, 56.1 percent will remain the same, 1.7 percent will reduce operations and 0.1 percent might have to stop.

It was easier for businesses to access loans in the first four months of this year, which increased their optimism.-VNA